Search results, like warm cookies right out of the oven or cool refreshing fruit on a hot summer’s day, are best when they’re fresh.
That’s the first sentence from the Google blog post about its Caffeine Web Indexing System…. and it’s incredibly apt!
Just last week, one of my colleagues and I were discussing the fact that whilst Google rewards freshness of content, we had noted that there seemed to be a higher weighting on sites that had been around longer. All good and well, unless you are searching for the answer to a question on WordPress 3.2.1 or Windows 7 – we noted that many of the results returned (unless we specified the year / version specifically) were dated. In fact, I was having some issues with the compatibility of Windows 7 with another application – the top ranking results I received were dated 2007 (not particularly helpful when looking for issues with Windows 7!).
With the latest Google update, they report that they are:
making a significant improvement to our ranking algorithm that impacts roughly 35 percent of searches and better determines when to give you more up-to-date relevant results for these varying degrees of freshness.
Amit Singhal, Google Fellow – acknowledges:
Different searches have different freshness needs. This algorithmic improvement is designed to better understand how to differentiate between these kinds of searches and the level of freshness you need, and make sure you get the most up to the minute answers.
What do the updates to the Google Algorithm mean?
Essentially, Google’s algorithm has been tweaked to acknowledge the relevance of the results based on its currency and how applicable to the search term.
Here are some examples:
If my Son is searching for “I Fight Dragons” – he probably wants to know the latest happenings with the group, within the last few days even.
If I’m searching for ‘hints’ for City of Gold on Google Plus (a guilty pleasure of mine) – I definitely want the latest and greatest.
If my hubbie is searching for “christmas cake” recipes – older recipes may be more appropriate.
What does it mean for Website Owners?
Firstly – Remember, that Googles customer are those that use the Search and those that pay to advertise – so the relevancy of results is extremely important.
Then – Keep It Simple! Build your content up over time, and keep updating the information to address the latest updates. Select your keywords and update regularly.
This is certainly why having a blog, and providing regular updates on your niche / industry has it’s appeal.
All in all – provide quality content, regularly – targeting your chosen keyword – and you’ll do well.
How often do you post to your website, update content or even add new content? Share your thoughts below…